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Barack Obama spreads his money wide; John McCain must pick his fights

October 24, 2008 | 12:41 pm

Barack_obama_speaks_in_reno_in_se_3 Imprecise though they may be, campaign finance reports offer a road map to the battlefield.

Republicans are moving money to Nevada, Colorado, Pennsylvania and Florida -- and taking it out of New Mexico, where George Bush won four years ago, a close look at the latest campaign finance disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission in the past 24 hours shows.

Barack Obama and the Democratic National Committee are sending millions to those states and several more.  They money is being used for getting out the vote in the final push leading up to election day.

In another indication of Obama’s money advantage over John McCain, he and the DNC transferred $23.4 million to state Democratic parties, including several in states that McCain must hold in order to win.

The Republican National Committee transferred $11.3 million, though it was bolstered by transfers from a few other state parties.

McCain, limited to spending no more than the federal grant of $84 million, apparently did not use it to shift money to state parties in the first part of October.

The reports covering the first 15 days of October show that the GOP is taking money out of New Mexico -- a state that it had hoped to hold, after George Bush won a narrow victory there four years ago.

The New Mexico Republican Party shifted $250,000 to its Nevada counterpart, while the Republican National Committee sent the $1.2 million to the Silver State.

California’s Republican Party also transferred $1 million over the Donner Summit to Nevada, according to state party spokesman Hector Barajas, who was in Nevada helping with the campaign to hold five electoral votes for McCain.

Obama and the DNC sent $900,000 to Nevada, and organized labor was making a major push to get out the vote there.

The RNC also sent $1.13 million to Colorado hoping to hang on to its nine electoral votes. California’s GOP sent $2 million to the Rocky Mountain State.

Obama and the DNC sent $1.4 million to Colorado in the first 15 days of the month.

Obama and the DNC also underscored the Democratic desire to wrest Wisconsin, sending $2.1 million to that state’s Democratic Party. Another $2.5 million went to the Ohio Democratic Party.

Florida and Pennsylvania, of course, remain centers for spending.

The DNC and Obama transferred $4 million to the Sunshine State while the RNC sent $3.2 million there in the first 15 days of the month. Then there is Pennsylvania. The RNC moved $1.5 million there, to the Democrats' $2 million.

-- Dan Morain

Photo credit: Alex Brandon/AP